Arrow Season 4 Episode 15 – TV Review
You’d think that an episode featuring another CW superhero, the crippling of Damien Dahrk, and the fruition of Black Boss’ Lian Yu digging expedition wouldn’t end in a selfish tirade from Felicity “We Can’t Excuse Her By Saying ‘Well, it was in the comics'” Smoak.
But you’d be wrong.
TL;DR The Super Friends, aided by a live action Vixen, strip Damien Dahrk of his powers and save William; Felicity bitches all the while; Thea finally denounces Malcolm, which makes him a bit scary; the Lian Yu treasure is some magic cave, and it grants Oliver entry.
It’s destiny! Or a tattoo from Constantine. One of the two.
So it’s all hands on deck to save William, which means that Oliver has to reluctantly fill in everyone about William. Laurel and Diggle are shocked but cool, but Felicity twirls her moustache and stuffs the revelation into her ammo pouch for later. In order to fight Malcolm’s magic powers, Oliver needs someone else with magic powers. Constantine is occupied, so Oliver recruits Vixen, who can wield the abilities of any animal thanks to a magic totem. Even then, though, a siege on Damien proves futile, and Oliver must oblige Damien’s demand to withdraw his mayoral campaign and publicly support Ruve. Which he does. But all hope is not lost, and the entire gang, with approval from Samantha, William’s mother, mobilises another offensive on Malcolm. Vixen, betting that Damien’s powers come from a totem like hers, gets the deets from Quentin and manages to steal and destroy it, leaving Damien powerless and arrested, and William saved. To close out the episode, Oliver encourages Samantha to take William away from all this madness until he’s at least eighteen, at which point he can seek Oliver out if he chooses. Which is when the Rolling Devil blasts in and calls off the engagement because Oliver doesn’t consult her on matters that in no way involve her. She also suddenly walks again, just to really smear her shit on the walls of this show. Meanwhile, Malcolm evades Thea’s questions about telling Damien of William. So when Thea finds out that Malcolm is also the one who kidnapped William, she dumps his arse as her father. He throws a tantrum, but still insists that he’s going to do naughty things to keep her alive. And on Lian Yu, Black Boss and his crew finish their dig. They are confronted by a white-eyed apparition of Supervisor who threatens to kill them all, but calms down when he sees the magic tattoo on Oliver. He grants Oliver passage into the Cave of Ordeals, and OSG is forced by Black Boss to join him.
Again, they mustn’t have found anything too exciting in there for Oliver to have never mentioned it, right?
I’ll give Arrow points for keeping the melodrama contained this episode. Most of the runtime is devoted to planning and executing the attacks on Damien. And Vixen’s introduction is to-the-point.
Felicity is Felicity, though. But that’s not a surprise.
Why I hate this episode:
Oh, Felicity. It’s bad enough that you poorly phrase your apparent acceptance of Oliver’s kid (I know what she was going for when she said she didn’t care, but pick your words, honey). And it’s bad enough that you predictably play the “I’m only mad because you lied to me” card, despite Oliver having been under strict instructions from Samantha. But the true cunt move comes at the episode’s end, when Felicity uses the fact that Oliver didn’t consult her on whether or not to encourage Samantha and William to move away. This is the straw that broke the camel’s back of their engagement. Bitch, William is not your son. You’re his stepmother. Hell, his prospective stepmother. You don’t get a fucking say in what his co-operating biological parents decide is best for him. Shut. The fuck. Up. Just fucking die, already, you fucking Mary Sue hacker wet blanket piece of shit.
No wonder Oliver feels like he’s being crushed by the weight of the world. He puts himself second at every turn and just gets spat on by everyone he helps. Hell, maybe Oliver will finally crack and murder Felicity, himself. It’d be worth the twenty seasons of guilt for the one, sweet moment of release.
Thea should just kill Malcolm. In addition to his external supervillainy, she also knows that he put the League before her life, and now she knows that he gifted her nephew to HIVE out of sheer spite. Just get rid of him.
Malcolm’s tantrum at Thea had the potential to be truly menacing, but he whimps out in his closing argument by saying he’d rather her hate him and be alive, than love him and be dead. I was on board when he was calling her out for being a constantly ungrateful spoiled brat and was hoping a true rift had formed. But their status quo hasn’t changed.
Oh, and in another groaner, Oliver mentions that he and Vixen had an “animated” encounter. Tragic.
But it’s not all bad:
I haven’t seen the Vixen animated series. After the perplexing crappiness of Play It Again, Dick, I had no motivation to give another CW web series a try. But Vixen in this episode is a breath of fresh air. Her magic powers are goofy, but they’re not overpowered, as we see her unable to defeat Damien’s magic powers head-on.
The plan to go after the totem, instead, is smart and effective. Damien’s “oh crap” face when his powers go out is totally worth it.
Damien doesn’t end the episode without any victories, though. Oliver does hold a press conference to withdraw his candidacy and throw his support behind Ruve. Damien might have been cleaned up, but I doubt HIVE and Ruve will fall with him. And even if Damien’s defeat does mean Oliver can resume his campaign, good luck explaining that to the voters.
We get the first Laurel/Oliver tease we’ve had in yonks. Laurel is upset to discover Samantha was impregnated while she and Oliver were together back in the day. She later admits to Quentin that it makes her feel like shit even though it was so long ago. With the episode so heavily featuring Felicity’s pouty face, could this mean Laurel’s back in with a chance?
Samantha turns her douchebaggery around this episode. She makes apologies to Felicity for forcing Oliver to keep William a secret from her. And the real pleasant surprise: after Oliver withdraws his candidacy, Damien tells him he’ll deliver William in a little while. Vixen and the Super Friends, though, reckon they have a plan to take him down directly and rescue William. Oliver is torn and leaves it to Samantha to decide, and she goes for the takedown plan. Nice one.
Is it pathetic that I’m excited about the Cave of Ordeals?
Oh, and without any magic powers to back him up, Damien looks like a total fool. And he knows it.